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Pro Athlete, Inc.
29 followers -
We are an eCommerce company that specializes in the customer experience.
We are an eCommerce company that specializes in the customer experience.

29 followers
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We’re always striving to enhance everything; including our company website. That’s right; we are excited to announce the rollout of our newly-updated company website!

Over the past few years we have dedicated ourselves to better capturing our history and memories, and now we have a great place to showcase that for the rest of world. If you have been to our building, you have seen most of the things listed on our site in person, but now we can share that with everyone else.

Our new website captures our core since we added videos, updated Alumni and Wellness pages, and even added a virtual tour that we hope will give you a closer look inside Pro Athlete.

All of the development and design work was accomplished by our Memory Officer. He did a great job of taking the site to a whole other level.

Please check out the site and provide us any feedback you might have to make it even better. Also, be sure to take the Virtual Tour. It’s so life-like you can almost taste Chef Nathan’s lunch when you pass through Ballpark Bistro!
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You’ve probably heard the expression, “it’s the little things that matter.” At Pro Athlete, we believe in this, and even obsess over it! We live in the details and do our best to make sure every single little piece of everyone’s experience with us is game-changing.

One of the companies that we admire is Disney. If you have ever been to Disney World, you know that they live for the details. Every aspect of the entire operation is carefully planned and executed to ensure every guest receives a magical experience. We believe in that here at Pro Athlete, as well.

We do our best to try and play to your senses. For example, when you walk in, you are greeted with the smell of genuine glove leather that covers the interior walls of our breezeway. Then, right before you enter the lobby, you are greeted over our sound system by a recorded welcome message from our good friend and Kansas City Royals’ announcer Ryan Lefebvre. As you enter the lobby, there is a cornfield graphic on the door. This is meant to feel like you are walking into a cornfield, just like in Field of Dreams, one of our favorite baseball movies.

Once you are in the building, the attention to detail continues to grow. We are fortunate to have a lot of cool spaces in our building that are intended to make you feel like you aren’t at work. From our bar to our spa, we make sure that we brand each of those spaces with cool names, decor, and signage to make you feel like you are in a real bar or at a real spa and not at your job.

Why do we spend so much time on these little things? It all goes back to our roots of creating a world-class experience for everyone we meet. It’s a rush for all of us who work here to see a guest take notice of our attention to detail. It’s addicting and turns into a game where we are constantly trying to one-up what we did before. There isn’t anything cooler than seeing a guest who is touring our office for the first time walk in and see their name and their college logo on our welcome boards. Then to see them take a selfie with it takes it to the next level!

As we continue to grow our team, we continue to look for people who share in this belief of wowing everyone through small details. If you think this concept is pointless or if the thought of this doesn’t excite you, then Pro Athlete is not the right place for you. However, if you get that warm and fuzzy feeling when someone notices and appreciates the attention to detail that you paid to something, then Pro Athlete is a grand slam fit for you!

Make it a game worth playing!
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10/12/17
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In 2012, a group of Pro Athlete employees casually took batting practice at Community America Ballpark. Five years later we now play a full-fledged baseball extravaganza with real jerseys, batting practice gear, mascots, walk-out music, locker rooms, videos, and much more.

When the players arrive at the park, their BP gear and uniform hang in their locker with their nameplate. During batting practice, our assisted stretching professional helped everyone stretch. Pro Athlete employees announced the game, sang the National Anthem, and facilitated the in-between inning activities. All food and beverages were free of charge to all the spectators (it was a sell out crowd…..ok, so not really). And, the game concluded with a postgame concert from a local Kansas City band, Minor Rewind.

As much fun as the game was, the best part of the night was interacting and helping our friends from the YMCA Challenger Program. 30+ Challenger athletes and their parents were in attendance and on the field to escort players during lineup announcements. A lot of the athletes ran the bases in between innings and even stuck around to watch well-below-average baseball.

Employees raised more than $4,000 for the YMCA Challenger program, and everyone in attendance raised nearly $3,000 for the family of one of the Challenger athletes. Create Stewardship is one of our Core Values, and during our annual company baseball game, we were able to give back to a great organization, family, and athletes.

We plan to improve the on-field and off-the-field components of the event each year. Our goal is to involve other Kansas City companies and raise even more money for charitable causes.

Thank you to the T-Bones, Minor Rewind, LFC Media and Charlie Hustle for making this year’s game another special one!
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A while back we noticed that more and more of our employees were going through the home buying process for the first time. One thing that we witnessed was all of the stress that can come along with making such a large purchase like one’s first home.

As an employer, we wanted to do everything that we could to help alleviate the stress that comes with the homebuying process, so we give all of our full-time employees the opportunity to take advantage of an interest-free home loan of $5,000 towards the purchase of their first home. The loan can be used towards anything to help the employee get over that hump that might seem hard to overcome.

It’s a pretty great feeling for the employee and our company to be part of something that special!

https://www.proathleteinc.com/blog/2017/9/22/perk-profile-home-loan-program

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If you know our company, you know that we obsess over customer service. That isn’t just for our customers who are buying our bats and gloves, but also for our business partners, our lenders, and our employees. That dedication to treating our employees like royalty is why we implemented our Safe-Ride Program nearly 10 years ago.

We want to make sure our employees are safe if they are spending time out on the town. If an employee is out-and-about and doesn’t feel like they should be driving because they have had one too many drinks, Pro Athlete will pay for that employee to get to their final destination safely. Before ride-sharing apps, employees could take a cab and just bring in a receipt the next business day, and they would be refunded immediately for the ride.

Now, with Uber and other ridesharing apps, we just provide each employee access to our Uber Business account. It’s as simple as requesting an Uber and just choosing the Pro Athlete profile over your personal one. We have no limit on how often you can use it. The only rule is that it’s not to be used to bounce from place to place; it’s meant to get you to your final destination safely. The first thing a lot of people will ask us when they hear about this perk is “how do you keep employees from taking advantage of it?” First of all, we hire for culture first, and part of that is hiring people that are thankful. Secondly, we have spent years creating what we like to call an Empowerment Culture. Mainly, provide resources and allow employees creative freedom and great things will happen. In turn, nobody takes advantage of that empowerment. We might be singing a different tune if an employee tries to take an Uber from Chicago back to KC after a late night out or something!
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Pro Athlete Family Assists In Hurricane Harvey Relief Efforts

Have you ever canceled a family vacation for a great reason? When Hurricane Harvey made landfall, one of our employees postponed her long-awaited vacation and, instead, traveled to Houston to assist with the recovery and rescue missions. Below is a first-hand account from Ellen Harris, a Pro Athlete front-end designer, and what she and her husband witnessed as they traded their big-vacation in for a round-trip drive to Texas to help with Hurricane Harvey recovery.

We have all been there, that countdown to a big vacation. You know the one you have been planning for months, the one you have requested off of work a whole year in advance for, the one you vow to do nothing but relax? For the past five years, Labor Day weekend has always been the placeholder for those types of vacations for my husband Toby and I. We were married over Labor Day weekend in 2011. So, every year since we have planned a vacation to a new state as a chance for us to reconnect; we hope to reach 50 years and all 50 states.

This year was no different. We booked our travels to Tybee Island, GA, and requested PTO from our work for the time off and started the countdown. But, four days before we were scheduled to leave, Hurricane Harvey barreled down the Gulf and wreaked havoc in Texas.

Georgia is nowhere near Texas, but my husband is a volunteer firefighter and Pro Athlete, the company I work for, encourages all employees to Embrace Stewardship. That’s why we changed our plans and made our anniversary vacation a mission trip to Texas instead.

We left Thursday, August 31 with a car full of water, food, an inflatable boat, and other supplies that had been donated by fellow Pro Athlete employees, parents from our son’s daycare, and ScriptPro employees. The entire ride down we listened to the Zello walkie talkie app, planning and driving according to the needs that came over the air. When we reached Beaumont, we knew the Ford Pavillion Center was where we needed to be.

Since I have three years of animal rescue work experience, it was the perfect place. The Ford Pavillion Center had become the epicenter for all Jefferson County animals (dogs, horses, goats, pigs, etc.) that were rescued from the storm by the army of other volunteers.The animal rescue volunteers came with their trucks, horse trailers, and boats with one mission in mind: rescue the animals.

Despite the Ford Pavillion Center being filled with animals, it was eerily quiet. You could see the look of exhaustion on the animals faces from days of worrying how they would survive the flood waters. We spent the day helping organize as much as we could, unloading supplies for both animals and workers that kind-hearted people from all over the country had brought, and also loading up supplies for those who had lost everything. There is not enough empathy in the world, and no words to be said when you look into the eyes of someone who tells you they just lost everything knowing that at the end of all of this, we were going home to a house we left just the way it was.

While working at Ford Pavilion we received an email from Ashton Morgan, one of the creators of Helpers of Houston (www.helpersofhouston.com), requesting volunteer workers for different neighborhoods in the Houston area. Knowing that we wanted to help those whose homes were damaged, I quickly responded letting her know that we were willing to help with any moving or demo work that was needed and we had brought all the tools necessary for the job. Within moments, Ashton gave me a call about a lady in Pasadena who also needed help with the cleanup of her home. Without hesitation, I told her we would be there to help.

On Saturday, September 2 we headed from Houston to Pasadena. On the way there I told Toby that I never realized how silent floods are. As you drive down the road, you can hardly tell if a house was affected by the floods until you turn the corner and see the piles of carpet, pressboard furniture, and mattresses that lined the sides of houses and buildings. It was no different when we pulled up to Donna's house; her home looked untouched, but just 25 ft to the left were overflowing dumpsters and a large pile of debris from her home and others in the neighborhood.

Saturday was spent just trying to organize a plan for her home, in all the chaos. When water gets into a house, the moisture in the air ruins more than just the items it touches. For Donna that meant having to part with a lot of items from her childhood, furniture she inherited from her mother, hundreds of books that pages would have turned moldy if not tossed, and tiny knick knacks that she had collected over the years. Along with all the organizing came the unintentional game of chess. It was a process of moving items from one room to another to sort through all the damage but also ensuring you left enough room to work on removing the drywall.

By the end of the day, Toby and I left exhausted and with the feeling of despair that we may not be able to see the house through to the end with just one day left. We exchanged numbers with Ryan, a member of the Coast Guard and also a volunteer with Helpers of Houston. His house was spared from the flooding, and because of that, he made sure to get out and help those who were not as fortunate. We let him know that we would be back tomorrow and would let him know when the house was ready for the drywall to be cut out so he could help us with it.

We woke up Sunday with the determination to finish Donna's house and leave Texas with the feeling of knowing her house was at least ready for the rebuilding stage. When we arrived at Donna's, we moved the last remaining large items out of the way, took pictures of the mold already starting to come through on the walls, and started the demo work on the wet drywall and insulation. True to his word and despite putting in as much work as we had, Ryan showed up ready to work and with the same determination we had to finish Donna's house. It was a lot of hard work, but we passed the time by listening to the hold music on Donna's phone while she waited to talk to FEMA, learned more about Ryan and his wife, and took breaks outside to talk with the neighbors around us who were also working on cleaning up homes. Around 5 pm that day the 2 ft of drywall in every room of the house was cut out and a bleach mix was sprayed to help with the possible onset of mold. Before leaving we made sure to take a picture of all us, so we could document not only the work we had done but the bond that was created through something as devastating as Hurricane Harvey.

It is overwhelming to think how much damage Hurricane Harvey did to Houston and the surrounding areas, but it is even more amazing to see just how many people came together. From those who created the Zello groups and stayed up countless nights dispatching and rescuing those who pleaded for help, to those who went out to rescue our four legged friends who couldn't call for help, to those who volunteered and are still volunteering at shelters, with home clean-ups and rebuilding, to everyone else who has donated supplies and money to help with relief. This is what they mean by Texas Strong.

Our drive home on Monday was a little bittersweet as we reflected back on our trip and volunteer efforts, but I kept coming back to one thing. A little over a month ago I did my 6-month self-assessment for Pro Athlete, and one of the questions asked is about how well you are doing with living the 12 Core Values. I gave myself a lower score and put on the assessment, "I still feel the same as I did at my 90-day review and that I really need to step up to the plate with Embrace Stewardship. I have started to think more recently about what I would like to spend my time volunteering for, and I just need to put a plan in action."

My plan was certainly not to be helping those in Texas after a devastating Hurricane, but I was so glad that both my husband and I could step up to the plate together and hit this one out of the park.

If you would like to donate to help those affected by Hurricane Harvey, you can do so by visiting the Houston Flood Relief Fund.

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KU Basketball Strength Coach Drops Knowledge on Pro Athlete

We were fortunate to have one of the most talented and recognized strength coaches in all of college sports in our office yesterday to speak with our employees. Andrea Hudy, or just Hudy as most people know her, spent an hour educating our employees on her methods that have helped her cultivate the most cutting edge strength program in the country.

At KU, they focus on culture, technique, and technology to help their student athletes be successful at the college level and at the professional level for some. They have data on basically anything, and everything an athlete does and they use it to help put together championship caliber athletes and teams.

Hudy has quite the resume to back up everything she is teaching her athletes. How many people can say they have worked for three different College Basketball Hall of Fame coaches? Probably not too many! She has worked for Jim Calhoun and Geno Auriemma at UCONN and Bill Self at Kansas. She has helped several athletes make it to the professional ranks, and she maintains great relationships with many of them still today.

We have had several speakers come to our facility to talk with our employees, and one thing that has remained constant with all of them is how important creating and maintaining a specific culture for your organization has to be. There is no more important thing you can do than to have a great culture and an identity. We use our Core Values as the backbone for that culture. Think of the amazing culture that must be present for the KU Basketball team or the Kansas City Royals! It’s awesome to see that dedication to culture take place in so many other places!

Thank you to Hudy for inspiring and educating our team today! We even saw the Mizzou fans in the room engaged and clapping, which tells you how great she was!
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At Pro Athlete we have 12 Core Values that we use to make every single decision in our business. They are without a doubt the most important part of what makes us who we are!

We want to give you all a look inside the meaning behind each Core Value in something we like to call our Core Value Spotlight. Each month we will feature a different Core Value and explain it in more detail and most importantly we will have members of our team tell you what each Core Value means to them. Check out our first spotlight of our #1 Core Value: Create Fans Through Service!

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It started as an idea. We wanted to provide our out-of-town vendors with a lodging experience better than a hotel, and it grew from there.

A few years ago we bought a house in the neighborhood near Zona Rosa so our vendors could stay close to our office, but also have a whole house to themselves. We gave the house a true Pro Athlete-inspired makeover and equipped it with a workout room, arcades, full bar, and a game room.

The house is free for our vendors and comes fully stocked with all the drinks you can imagine. The house backs right up to Zona Rosa and includes a secret gate that visitors can access to walk to Zona Rosa easily. But, the coolest part? The house comes with a blue light on the roof, so guests can identify the house from a distance (especially if they have had a few beverages at Zona Rosa).

Needless to say, vendors loved the Pro Athlete house.

But, vendors don’t visit every day, so there were still a lot of vacancies. That is when this awesome perk took a turn toward total awesomeness. We offered the houses up to our employees free of charge. And, we still offer this perk today.

The house can be used for staycations, family in town, group gatherings, team outings, etc. Just like for the vendors, the house is rent free and fully stocked.

We didn’t stop there. We didn’t want to take the chance of renting it to an employee and a vendor needing it later, so what do you do in that case? Yep, you guessed it! You buy the house next to it and do the same thing. So we did! The only major difference is that instead of a game room, the second Pro Athlete house has a full theater room.

So, now we have two houses for vendors, employees, job applicants, etc. For the past year or so, both houses have been booked solid every weekend of the year.

It’s an amazing perk that has allowed some employees to experience great memories with their friends and family. The houses have hosted birthday parties, graduations, department meetings, staycations, and everything in between.
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8/18/17
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As a follower of our blog and members of the Pro Athlete Fan Club, we are seeking new and exciting opportunities to give you insight into what’s going on around the office.

This week, we sat down with one of our own employees, Austin Hall. Austin has been a member of our team for several years and oversees our customer service experience that we strive to provide to all of our customers that have questions or need assistance when ordering a product from one of our eCommerce websites.
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